After looking at ski chalets and ski resorts all over
the U.S., Architect-Author Peter Blake (who is a skier himself) came up with
these sketches for his version of the ideal chalet to be built on a typical
hillside site. Living space: 1,000 square feet. Total cost for both land and
Best site is on south-facing slope. Elevation gives
good downhill view, and southern exposure allows sun to help warm house.
Because cold air drops downhill, the rear wall should be heavily insulated.
Simplified cross section of chalet shows bedrooms
downstairs, living area upstairs. With this arrangement, warm air within house
will rise into living area but leaves bedrooms cool for sleeping.
Downstairs plan includes entrance porch for ski racks
and firewood storage, opening into "decontamination chamber" with a
grating where snow can be brushed off.
Upstairs plan features single, 20-foot-by-25-foot room
containing living and dining areas, kitchen and sunken pit with fireplace.
Living area opens out onto balcony.
Detailed cross section shows how different parts of
chalet work together. Cooking area is separated from dining room only by low
storage counter so meals can progress without cook being exiled to kitchen.
Flat roof, from which snow-loads will blow off easily (snow sticks to north
faces of pitched roofs), allows for maximum living space on the second
Sunken pit, 12 inches below floor level of living room,
is after-ski gathering place. Upholstered benches can also sleep overnight
guests. Blankets are stored under benches.